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Thanks guys. Last night I ordered 4 new shocks, front ujoints and axle seals. I took it to the dealer and that's what they said, nothing too major so that's cool. Last night a buddy looked at it and confirmed the same things that the dealer told me. Advance had a good deal online last night so I got $50 off of my order. Everything for $214:)
 

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hate to say it, but the shopping list is not done. your going to have soo much apart. might as well do the upper & lower ball joint on the side in question. noises and roughness could also be a bad wheel bearing, so check for looseness when you have it out.
also, this thread is for RAMVANMAN. he peddles his steering shaft bushing here. its not a diagnostic thread for anyones vehicle in piticular. please start a thread for your issues.
 

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back to ramvanman's thread, i got his kit the other day and let me tell you its alot better then i thought it would be, have yet to put it in but once i do i will report back, oh and i tightened my steering box, which i did not know i was supposed to do when i fist installed it so it tightened up my steering nearly perfect, then im doing the hell bent steering, then davids fix, and maybe a steering shaft, BUT if you do not have a new steering box i would never ever suggest you adjust it... EVER, IMO but i think this steering column fix is going to be the kicker, from me and all the dodge community THANK YOU DAVID
 

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RamVanMan
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Discussion Starter #444
Back to you Ollie....thanks David

When I'm turning, I can feel something clicking in the steering wheel. It is like a clicking feeling, starts, stops, starts, stops, etc. I really only feel it when going really slow or am coming to a stop. I was thinking at first it was ball joints or something but I can't hear any noises in the front end, that's what makes me think it is in the column itself.
Hi Ollie:

Great advice from Spun 360 & Firefighter. Check everything. Twice.

You'll get it all going straight down the highway, in good time !

Most front end noises that are 'frame' originated (steering box & lower down), won't end up making a noise distinct enough to be both heard & felt in the steering wheel.

(OK, Maybe a loose shock mount bolt is the sole exception, in my experience, but even that should be felt more in the floorboards.)

The other tell-tale hint is this:

Steering column originated noises due to the bad lower bearing tend to be even more obvious when you roll up the windows (thus making the cab quiet & blocking outside noise).

Contrarywise, rolling up the windows will tend to make any noises originating from the lower 'frame' components more distant.

So, even if it is the front axle u-joints on your 4x4 Ram, and not the column, rolling up the windows should make the noises you are hearing much more quiet.

If they get louder, more distinct, when windows are up & cab quieter, likely it is the column.

Not sure if you've tried grabbing the spring / steering shaft as I suggest in the YouTube video on our site, as a check on the tightness (or looseness) of the lower column bearing.

YouTube vid on page here: www.RockSolidRamTruckSteering.com

When you do this check, note that if your truck has the Automatic tranny, movement that is observed between the smaller diameter 'column shifter tube', and the larger outer column shell is indicative of the internal bearing being worn out. It is the lower column bearing that helps center every thing up, inner shaft & column shifter tube, within the outer column tube.

On Manual tranny trucks, even simpler: your steering shaft will be loose (when grabbed at the tension spring which encircles the shaft) in the column outer tube.

Hope this is of help to you Ollie.

Getting your Ram truck sorted out is worth the effort - but you have to be patient - these trucks will help train the Character Virtue of Patience into you, like few others !!

You're learning, like most of us here, that if "you're a Dodge Ram Truck owner, pretty soon you'll be a Dodge mechanic".....

Best Regards, David Alan / RamVanMan ;)
 

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RamVanMan
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Discussion Starter #445
back to ramvanman's thread, i got his kit the other day and let me tell you its alot better then i thought it would be, have yet to put it in but once i do i will report back..... i think this steering column fix is going to be the kicker, from me and all the dodge community THANK YOU DAVID
Myles / Firefighter1992:

Thanks for the compliment & assessment.

Our goal is to provide a great remedy for what ails our Ram truck column, at a reasonable price + Easy to understand & straightforward instructions to implement our RockSolid column fix / upgrade.

It also saves $$$ over spending a thousand or so on a new column.

Look forward to your report upon your install !

Regards, David Alan / www.RockSolidRamTruckSteering.com :gr_patrio
 

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Good info
 

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How do i fix the play in the steering? I can move the steering wheel left or right 1/4 turn and the truck doesn't turn. Any ideas? Its a 98 Dodge Ram 1500 4" Lift 33x12.50r15 tires.
Also how much for that fix?
 

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Does anyone have the directions before i think of doing this
 

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johnnyjaws
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i put the rock solid bushing in my 98 ram 1500 works great! no slop at all!
 

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David, maybe you can help me diagnose my issue as to whether it needs your fix.

A couple of weeks ago, I had the truck towed for a clutch kill switch issue and because the way the truck was parked, the tow truck driver had to dry turn the wheel to the left to get it winched up the flatbed. He really cranked on the wheel with both hands to get it to turn.

Ever since it was fixed, I now feel a pronounced looseness, popping, jostling, wiggling feeling in the steering wheel to the LEFT of center. Only at 9, 10, 11 o'clock does it happen. Turning the wheel RIGHT is smooth and tight. Every little bump in the road, or dip or blip causes this loose sensation. It also is felt simultaneously in the pedals. And since every road in Texas is crap and leans to the right, I have to constantly feel this while steering left to drive straight.

There is not much play in the wheel, none in the box itself and the other parts in the suspension seem ok. They have all been replaced before but going on five or more years.

My question is does the OEM bushing cause the looseness feeling without the "clunking" noise? Once in a while I can make the steering wheel "click" when turning either direction. But this constant loose inaudible popping is very annoying. What did dry turning the wheel do? If I need your kit, I will get it but wanted to ask first. Thanks.
 

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'Sounds as if there's a huge market for that new bushing... including me...
Mine's a nice, clean '95 RAM, 360, Auto... and clunking happily on start and stop... also steering wanders... The truck is more comfortable than my Honda Civic, just requires you constant attention to keep it goping straight ;-) ...billl
 

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Best money I ever spent on this old truck!

Did your ‘Rock Solid Upgrade’ ‘On The Truck’ (I wasn’t about to take that tilt wheel out;-) to my 1995 Ram 1500 5.9, auto-trans, power brake 2WD, vehicle yesterday,

Not having a garage full of the ‘right’ tools, I went out and purchased a 1 ½” metal-cutting wheel for my old Dremel and a new 13mm socket to break the ‘steering-to-intermediate’ clamp bolt.

My intermediate shaft has no ‘wiggle’, but was slow to compress, disengaging it from the steering shaft. Looks like it already has the ‘recall’ performed on it, and the boot is in good shape.

I found that with the recommended ‘temporary screw clamp’ retainer in place, I couldn’t get at the spring retainer, so I ended up cutting vertically, down through the first couple of coils of the spring, until I severed the retainer. (That spring does come off there in a hurry!).

The only trouble I had with the ‘removal process’ was the bearing retainer ‘cup’, but I finally used one of those ‘paint scraper/roller cleaner’ things to pry against the shift arm. (I guess the ‘right’ tool isn’t always an automotive one).

I ‘witness marked’ the shaft and the I-shaft clamp, but when the steering column is immobilized and not removed, it’s kind of a moot point –nothing can move far.

The install went well. After cleaning up the steering shaft, all I had to do to the ID of the new bushing, was remove the machining ‘shoulders’, and it fit the shaft perfectly (Thank you, and your micrometer), but the OD was another story.

The inside of the spot-weld that secured the shift arm made a rather large obstruction, and had to be filed off, and the OD of the bushing required considerable ‘sanding’ to even fit inside and avoid steering/shift lever interaction (Better than too loose, I guess).

Even though I ‘worked’ it some, the Intermediate shaft required some mechanical ‘help’ (the ‘field expedient’, a block of wood against the motor mount and a long screwdriver) to slide back onto the steering shaft. Did not replace the ‘pinch’ bolt as directed in the factory manual, but ‘torqued’ it to spec… don’t think it will fall off ;-)

The conversion was highly successful, in that the steering is now smooth and precise. The truck is now a pleasure to drive for me an my wife. It goes where I point it, and stays there !!

I do, however, still have a slight ‘clunk’, though not at all on steering, only on ‘Start’ and ‘Stop, but none of the other front-end parts have been replaced, except the lower ball joints… I suspect, maybe, the ‘uppers’ are crying out for replacement, too.

Aside from the power-brake unit requiring a slight left turn of the wheel to make the bolt head accessible. Assuming that a 2Gen with power brakes and auto transmission, is the most ‘cluttered’ they get, this conversion can definitely be performed ‘On the Truck’ by a back-yard mechanic like myself.

Thanks and God Bless You!

billl
 

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Dude you must have been reading my mind as you posted this as I just finished posting my AC vacuum issue below this thread.

To answer your question yes I my steering is beyond loose and the column has a lot of play in it. I just purchased my 97 Ram 318 1500 4x4 3" lift, I just ordered some new Rancho RS7000 front and rear shocks, and my cold air intake system. Well on my way, but I plan on rebuilding the front suspension.
It has 216,839 miles so I am sure it is well past due.
I hope this answers your questions.
Thanks
 

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RamVanMan
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Discussion Starter #459 (Edited)
Thanks for your Install / Review & Feedback for You....

Did your ‘Rock Solid Upgrade’ ‘On The Truck’ (I wasn’t about to take that tilt wheel out;-) to my 1995 Ram 1500 5.9, auto-trans, power brake 2WD, vehicle yesterday........

Even though I ‘worked’ it some, the Intermediate shaft required some mechanical ‘help’ (the ‘field expedient’, a block of wood against the motor mount and a long screwdriver) to slide back onto the steering shaft.....

The conversion was highly successful, in that the steering is now smooth and precise.

The truck is now a pleasure to drive for me an my wife. It goes where I point it, and stays there !!


I do, however, still have a slight ‘clunk’, though not at all on steering, only on ‘Start’ and ‘Stop......

......this conversion can definitely be performed ‘On the Truck’ by a back-yard mechanic like myself.

Thanks and God Bless You!

billl
Hi Bill:

Thank you, I want to say for a well written account of the install.

It's a real plus when the wife is no longer complaining about driving the Ram Truck !

Regarding your comment about how you had to make a 'field expedient' way of freeing your stuck intermediate shaft back onto the column end, this strongly suggests:IDEA::

Your sliding joint on the intermediate shaft is dry & in need of greasing. No Doubt.

This explains why you still have a very minor noise upon starting & stopping: the steering box is on the frame & column on the cab & they flex in relation to each other, dampening road vibration & shock.

When the intermediate shaft becomes stiff, due to some factor: rust, dirt in the joint & lack of lubrication, it causes the road shock to be transmitted 'up the line' to the column, and thus you hear a slight clunk upon Start & Stop, exactly as you describe.

I'd suggest you remove the intermediate shaft & grease it, trying to keep the joint protected, by the rubber boot, (if it's still there).

In any case, probably annually, regularly check the joint & clean & lube with a bit of lithium grease or equivalent.

Thanks again Bill.

I hope you read this.

If so, please let us know what you discover.

God bless :)......David Alan / Ram Steering Fix Guy / aka "RamVanMan"
 
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